Plan to cut UK immigration is “cruel and inhumane” and will add to NHS staffing crisis, says DAUK

The Doctors’ Association UK (DAUK) says the Government’s five-point plan to curb immigration will lead to the “systematic destruction of the NHS”.

Home Secretary James Cleverly has announced:

  • A ban on health and care workers bringing family dependants to the UK
  • A hike in the minimum salary required for skilled workers from overseas from £26,200 to £38,700 from spring
  • More than doubling the minimum income required for family visas from £18,600 to £38,700 from spring
  • The scrapping of the shortage occupation list and employers being able to pay workers 20% below the going rate for jobs 
  • A review of the graduate immigration route by the Migration Advisory Committee.

Dr Pushpo Hossain, DAUK’s international medical graduate (IMG) lead, said: “We have a huge number of vacancies in our National Health Service and immigration is delivering vital care to people who need it.

“The plans announced by the Government are cruel and inhumane and will only make the staffing crisis in the NHS even worse.

“We’re not training enough healthcare staff as it is, and we’re not retaining enough either with UK-trained staff already leaving in their droves because of pay and working conditions.

“This announcement will make it even harder for the migration of health workers to the UK, decimating recruitment and placing an even greater strain on the NHS.

“The current pay scale for many doctors and nurses wouldn’t meet the minimum salary threshold. Why would anyone work in a system that’s underpaid, understaffed and overstretched and accept they won’t be able to bring their families to be with them and to help them decompress at the end of a gruelling shift?

“It will also destroy family lives, causing misery for many people working in the NHS and could force them to leave.

“It will not only affect healthcare workers who were planning to come to the UK, but also the morale of IMGs, like myself, who feel targeted by inflammatory statements towards International healthcare professionals from this Government.”

“In short, the essence of the plan is a systematic destruction of the NHS.”